Photo: By Kim Joar on Flickr
The first Cheesecake Factory is opening in Dubai and there are 21 more locations planned.Why would a chain like the Cheesecake Factory, with all its decadent fare, choose to head to the Middle East?
Well, founder and CEO David Overton thinks that the Middle East is the perfect place for his restaurants to prosper.
In fact, he says that it’s easier to expand in the Middle East than places like Asia, Mexico and Canada.
Fast Company’s Erin Schulte spoke with Overton about what he’s doing in the Middle East. Here’s what he had to say:
“I think the Middle East, when you really look at it, is easier than going to Asia or Mexico or Canada, all of which we are looking at, too. Everyone is on an even playing field because everything is brought in — about the only thing they really have there are dates. Whether you’re an American or European concept, you’re flying it in and paying the same money. That is an advantage.
When you go over there, you see how beautiful the malls are. And almost all life revolves around malls. It’s too hot, so people spend a lot of time in malls — they have a coffee, they shop, they watch their kid go bowling, go to a movie, come back and have dinner, and have another coffee later. They’re there until 11 at night. It’s almost all their social life. We thought that was great.”
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